The activity on deck setting canvas, that started around 23:00h last night, lasted for a couple of hours, time used to set almost all our canvas again, now in Port Tack. Overnight the sails that remained furled were the Main Course, the Main Upper and Middle Staysail, Flying Jib and Fore Top Mast Staysail.
Until the morning the sail configuration remained the same, under NNWwind up to 15kn, while the Europa gently rolls in lower swell than yesterday at a speed between 4 to 5kn. But at breakfast time we could feel the wind dying down again to less than 9kn, still from NNW-ly direction. Well, time to get rid of all sails again. Almost all canvas is clued up with the exception of the Gaff and Mizzen sails in the aft, Mizzen upper and middle staysails and the Inner and Outer Jibs on the head rig. Starboard engine roars again as we steer on a 150º Course. During the morning we had lack of wind, keeping the same sail configuration until after lunch. Having time enough to have a talk on the Staysails by Djimon Then it starts blowing harder increasing gradually over 15kn and shifting to the South.
The few Staysails set are changed to Starboard tack. It was time already for our daily meeting with the Captain, where he informed us about our progress during the last 24h (125nm), now we are just passing the latitude of Peninsula Valdes in the Argentinean coast. The distance still to cover to reach South Georgia (840nm) and the manoeuvres to do during the next hours. First bracing the yards sharp to Starboard tack, then the plan for the afternoon will be setting more Staysails. We keep motorsailing like that while first we enjoyed a furling session for all Square sails that are still not stowed away, and are just hanging on their gear.
Once finished we start setting all Staysails but the Flying Jib, not before Merle gave an explanation on deck about them, how they work and how to set them. Jordi repeating his talk on Seals of the Sub Antarctic and Antarctic areas followed the sailhandling. Now we all could have an introduction about the different species of Pinnipeds (Fur Seals,Sea-Lions and True seals) that are most likely to meet during our trip. In the meantime the wind kept picking up, now blowing between 17 to 20kn from the South, while we steer Eastwards on a course between 125 to 130º. Even on those conditions we had a while to keep going with some maintenance projects that have to be done, like splicing and serving a new halyard for the main Royal. Increasing winds slowed down our progress even more during the evening and night, making us drift further Eastwards.
Wildlife sightings today included several Royal, Wandering and Black browed albatrosses, and a few Atlantic Petrels as well.